SPIE helps for carrying offshore wind energy onto land


SPIE Belgium was tasked by Elia, Belgium’s high voltage electricity transmission system operator, to produce two 380 kV high-voltage substations: “Van Maerlant” at Damme and “Gezelle” at Dudzele, within the framework of Elia’s Stevin programme, which is aimed notably at piping energy produced by offshore wind farms inland.

These schemes follow on from the work on producing and installing the Horta high-voltage substation, delivered by SPIE Belgium in May 2015.

Fact sheet

  • Subsidiary: SPIE Belgium
  • Year: 2019
  • Tags: High-voltage line
  • Status: Completed

Numerous challenges

SPIE Belgium has faced several challenges:

  • The rapid (nine months), safe and effective completion of a GIS(1) installation constituted the initial issue. Once the GIS installation was finished, about 14 kilometres of cabling were pulled through to the Elia control room. The 380 kV overhead lines enter the installation through 84-tonne portal structures that are 27 metres tall and 54 metres wide.
  • Other constraints for consideration included a restricted space, and a nearby gas pipeline.
  • Waste management at the site was also a daily priority. To limit the environmental impact, the decision was taken to recycle waste as much as possible. As a result, no less than 140 tonnes of packaging wood have been recycled.

This is a unique achievement, not just because of its scale, but also because this is the first time such powerful high voltage substations have been produced in Belgium.

(1) Gas-Insulated Switchgear